Arnaud, Francis Thomas Marie De Baculard D'

, a miscellaneous French writer, was born at Paris, Sept. 15, 1716, of a noble family originally from the comtat Venaissin. He had his education among the Jesuits at Paris, and discovered early symptoms of genius, having written some tolerable verses at the age of nine. He composed also in his youth three tragedies, none of which were acted; but one, on the subject of admiral Coligni’s murder on St. Bartholomew’s day, was printed in 1740. These works recommended him to Voltaire, who gave him advice and pecuniary assistance in his studies. Some of his early productions were also favourably noticed by Frederick, king of Prussia, who invited him to Berlin, and in some verses, called him his Ovid. This compliment, however, excited only the ridicule of the wits; and after residing about a year at Berlin, he went to Dresden, where he was appointed counsellor of legation. A wish to revisit his country, and an invitation from the nephew of marshal Saxe, determined him to return to Paris, where he lived many years, enjoying a large circle of acquaintance, from whom he retired by degrees to have leisure for the composition of his numerous works. During the reign of terror he was sent to prison, and on his liberation was exposed to great distresses from want of oecouomy, although not illiberally supplied by government, and by the profits of his works. He died Nov. 8, 1805. His writings, which are very numerous, consist of novels, poems, and plays, of which there are two editions, one in 24 vols. 12 mo, and one in 1-2 vols. 8vo, 1803, neither very complete, nor do his countrymen seem to consider this writer as likely to enjoy a permanent reputation. 2


Biog. Universelle, —Dict. Hist. This last has the most complete list of his works.